Production Notes: The Importance of Olive Oil

December 28th of this year was a beautiful and busy day. It all started with a long drive from my place in Hollywood to the olive groves owned by the Temecula Olive Oil Company to meet up with the host and producer of my show. The job for the day was to document the harvesting and pressing process for making quality olive oil and to shoot an in-depth interview with the company’s owner and resident olive oil guru.

In producing a health and lifestyle segment for an upcoming PBS television series, we were hoping to learn the facts about the benefits of olive oil and help our audience be able to differentiate between the facts and the misleading marketing that they are fed in local grocery stores. What we soon found out was much more than would fit into a five or six minute segment in our show.

From a production standpoint the shooting went pretty much the way it always does. It starts out slow and then gets faster as the day goes on making the shoot both fun and challenging. With limited daylight in the Wintertime, we always seem to be chasing the sun. The plan is to shoot everything outdoors first and then move indoors once the sun gets too low to shoot in. Well, our plan doesn’t always fit with what is happening at the location. I often find myself running from indoors to outdoors, trying not to forget to change camera settings between setups. Our crew is lean, meaning it’s just me and the host/producer. I’m the director, the cameraman, the audio guy, the still photographer, the grip and the gaffer. It’s hard to keep it all straight at times. I shoot BTS stills between interview questions while still attached to the camera with headphones. I packed a reasonable amount of gear for the day. I wanted to be able to move, setup quickly and be able to carry as much by myself as possible. I brought one of our many JVC GY-HM150U ProHD Camcorders, two Sennheiser lav mic kits, an on-camera shotgun mic, Manfrotto tripod, an Anton Bauer battery system, a Canon 60D dslr with a couple lenses and a lighting kit with 5 fixtures. I only ended up using three LED light fixtures in the olive pressing room.

Overall the shoot went very well. I shot loads of good b-roll to cut over the interview and the knowledge we gained by interviewing the company’s owner is absolutely astounding. One nice take away from the experience was to realize that olive oil is just another fruit juice. Fresher is always better when it comes to the quality of fruit juices.

For the content of our show, this is another great shoot in the can. We made great contacts and learned so much about the process of making quality olive oil. I look forward to another visit to the Temecula Olive Oil Company in the near future. It’s a beautiful place that provides a very healthy experience for both mind and body.

For more information about California produced olive oil visit: Temecula Olive Oil Company